Australia — With Australias urban areas increasingly being pushed closer to bushfire prone areas, the awareness and understanding of building loss through bushfire has taken a high priority position with authorities and researchers.
Trend® Windows & Doors in conjunction with the Bushfire CRC at CSIRO have undertaken extensive research and development to advance the design of window and door systems to enable them to withstand the extreme heat of bushfires.
In houses, windows and doors are considered the most susceptible area to damage from bushfires. Many houses destroyed in bushfires in fact survive the passing of the fire only to burn down later from attack by embers and flaming debris borne on the wind.
This may occur up to some hours after the fire-front has passed. Damage from either glazing failure or window system failure, allows for the debris to enter the building to cause ignition. The design of houses and buildings has remained unchanged over the years and until now little thought has been given to the materials used in housing, and how these react to exposure to bushfires.
The Xtreme® range of products are the first window and door systems in Australia designed to withstand heat flux up to 40kW/m2 without failure from either the glazing or the window system itself, thus helping to prevent internal ignition of the house and loss of precious possessions.
It is important to point out that the entire system needs to be considered when designing a house to resist a bushfire. It is not one component i.e. frame, seals, sash or glass etc that is critical, but how these perform as a whole.
Trend has combined the technologically advanced Quantum XP® Window system with Pyro-Protec seals and 5mm standard toughened glass or toughened double glazing to produce Xtreme® Windows and Doors. This window system is a cost efficient solution to a problem that is fast becoming a national challenge.
The Xtreme® Window and Door System, features break-through technology with the Patented Van Door® and Pyro-Protec Sealing systems which act to protect the home against air infiltration and bushfire penetration. Extensive testing at CSIRO laboratories, has shown that the Xtreme® product range of windows and doors withstands the extreme heat generated by extreme range fires (40kW/m2) and passes the relevant testing regime. This testing which was done in conjunction with whole of house research, is outlined in the report produced by the Bushfire CRC.